Wirral Home Appliances
Our second ‘Shop Independent’ business is Wirral Home Appliances, a fantastic, well-established business that has providing Birkenhead residents with all kinds electrical and gas appliances for 25 years. You can find them at 6 Oxton Rd, Birkenhead CH41 2QJ.
We asked owner Lorraine Jones to tell us a little about her background, describe the business and tell us why shopping at independent retailers makes so much sense.
Tell us about your company?
Wirral Home appliances is a family owned business run by us (Lorraine and Andy Jones), we specialise in the supply and installation of brand new domestic appliances. The shop has been in Birkenhead for 25 years and we have owned it since 2012
Why should people shop at independent retailers such as yourselves?
Our customers come to us for product knowledge, customer service and a personal touch, the things you just can’t get at the big high street retailers. People know they can ask us for a recommendation and can trust that we’ll give them the best advice; based on their taste and budget, and sell them the best product for them.
For example, we have a lot of older customers that have difficulty leaving their homes, they know that they can just call us when they need a new appliance and that we’ll choose the best option for them, make the choice and deliver it. We’ve been able to build up that level of trust over the years with our customers and we are really proud of it.
We always ask if a customer has a budget in mind and then recommend them from there. If our customers budget can't match their vision we work hard to find a suitable alternative at an affordable price. We want all our customers to leave the shop knowing that we have their best interests (and wallets) at heart.
What else makes you different from the larger chain retailers?
The price you see on display is the price you pay. All our prices include delivery plus collection and removal of the old appliance, these are all additional at the big high-street retailers, we do however charge a nominal fee of £10 for removal of any refrigeration units but that is mentioned upfront. We can also give you an am/pm delivery time slot. Andrew is a qualified fitter so our customers know who is going to install their new item too, which really builds that level of trust and personal touch.
Where are you from?
Andy is Prenton born and bred and I’m (Lorraine) originally from Kildare in Ireland.
What is your background? Have you always been involved in the electrical retail industry?
Andy is a qualified gas fitter so does all our installations, this is great for our customers as they know he’ll do a great job. I’ve long been in appliance and gas fire retail trade, and have a trade background in logistics gas appliances so I’ve years of experience and loads knowledge that our customers can take advantage of
What do you like the most about running a business in Birkenhead?
The wide variety of people we meet every day. Some of our customers have been coming to us for so long that they have become friends and pop in just to say hello. We also enjoy dealing with different generations of families, customers often return with their children and grandchildren who then become loyal customers and friends.
Have you been helped by any other businesses or organisations in the area?
We are members of the Wirral Chamber of Commerce and have a great relationship with our neighbouring independent retailers too.
What was the most exciting thing to happen with the business?
We opened our second shop in Moreton in 2015.
What do you do to relax away from the business?
We have 2 boys, aged 7 and 8 who keep us occupied. They play rugby for West Park in St Helens.